View of a green butterfly resting on a blue flower

Green Hairstreak. Photo: Shona Refoy

A pale silvery blue butterfly with some black spots nectaring on a blue flower

Holly Blue. Photo: Shona Refoy

Two photos from Shona sent to us with some very interesting observations:

I was in High Wood near Badbury Rings this afternoon, 11/05/2021 – when the sun came out so did the Green Hairstreaks and Holly Blues!  The Green Hairstreak is much easier to see when not sitting on a green leaf! (He’s not nectaring, just resting).

The Holly Blue is a male and is sneakily feeding from the top of the Bluebell (just like the female I saw last year – see article in most recent newsletter No 95)  The photo has been cropped so you can see that his proboscis is inserted between the petals at the top of the flower.

Also, since writing the newsletter article, I have read in my Jeremy Thomas book that Holly Blues ‘prefer to drink honeydew rather than nectar’. I would presume that the proboscis is not long enough to nectar on a bluebell from the open end of the flower; also that the honeydew has been washed from the leaves by recent rain, so they don’t have much choice!

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